FDTL5 Economics Resources: Supporting EU students in UK Higher Education

Background

The FDTL5 economics projects, METAL, FEELE, ETC and Applying WinEcon have delivered a varied set of resources and skills to enhance student engagement with economics. From March 2008 – March 2009 Dr. Rebecca Taylor directed the FAME project which was an additional year of dissemination and embedding of the outcomes of these four projects. This dissemination exercise has been enormously successful in encouraging academics across the UK to engage more fully with the resources that were developed with HEFCE funding.

During the FAME project it became apparent that departments lacked the required knowledge of EU economics education to effectively support this core group of students in their study of economics in the UK. It was felt that more information about EU university systems and academic qualifications would help to better equip UK departments to effectively support and engage EU students in undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. This knowledge would then enable lecturers to better understand how the available economics resources developed by the FDTL5 projects can be used to enhance the learning experience of these students. 

Departments require a resource that details essential information about the different European education systems/qualifications and that links suggested economics resources to different groups of students. We are confident that such a resource will be enthusiastically received by the UK academic community and are eager to use it to encourage ongoing engagement with the outstanding resources that were developed for the HEFCE funded FDTL5 projects (ETC, METAL, FEELE and Applying WinEcon).

Overall aims

(a) To provide a resource for academics in the UK HE sector that gives information and insight into the provision and delivery of economics degrees across the EU.

(b) To use information about EU education systems and qualifications to further engage UK departments of economics in the use of the resources developed by the four FDTL5 economics projects.

Value Added

  • Deals with a common problem for all UKHEI
  • Time saved by centralising activity/resource
  • Linking to a key EU policy stance
  • Strengthens network approach/contacts especially with EU counterparts
  • Creates opportunities for additional targeted dissemination of FDTL5 economics project outputs resulting from a better understanding of the qualifications of EU students now studying at UK universities

What is the Resource?

Documentation/links to key policies relating to Bologna all presented in an interactive map. Detailed information will be provided on country specific provision of economics on the basis of a split between undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. Each link would include recommendations relating to the specific FDTL5 resources that would provide the most effective learning support for core student groups.

We will provide a full report on each country highlighting:

  • A summary of the nature of HE in each country
  • Number of institutions
  • Nature of departments (e.g. within Business or not)
  • Qualifications entering HE
  • Structure of programmes
  • Details of teaching styles/ patterns
  • Maths role
  • Time period of study
  • Progression routes
  • Collaboration with UK/other EU partners
  • Language of instruction
  • Recommendation of specific FDTL5 project resources for specific groups of students based on an improved understanding of the educational background and experience of EU students studying economics in the UK

Outcomes and Milestones

  • Interactive map
  • Country profiles
  • Recommendations about FDTL5 resource use with core groups of EU students
  • Journal article submission to IREE (International Review of Economics Education)
  • Presentation of work at the DEE Conference (Developments in Economics Education) and at CHUDE (Committee of Heads of University Departments of Economics)
  • Engaging disengaged departments (e.g. as with the funding map that we previously created for UK departments of Economics which has received outstanding feedback from academics across the UK)
  • Seminars to present and discuss the resource with academics from across the sector

Benefits for the wider community

The outcomes of the four projects have been exceptionally well received by those who have engaged with them and embedded them in their curriculum. It is of benefit to departments to have a more in depth understanding of the core groups within their student body so that they can more effectively utilise and embed the FDTL5 resources in their teaching and learning activities. It also enables lecturers to recommend the use of these resources to students for independent study.